Department of Human Services

Now Text OR Call for Emotional Support in NJ for COVID-19 Related Stress and General Mental Health Concerns

In response to the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Mental Health Association in New Jersey has launched a new texting option for New Jerseyans to access emotional support from trained specialists, in addition to call-in service already available through the New Jersey MentalHealthCares Helpline. Crisis counseling and a vast variety of virtual support groups are also available as necessary through both the texting and phone features. 


These services are provided free-of-charge through the New Jersey Hope and Healing Crisis Counseling program (CCP). The Mental Health Association in New Jersey in collaboration with the New Jersey Department of Human Services’ Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services, is offering the CCP through a (FEMA/SAMHSA) grant.


Getting help is easy. New Jerseyans can simply text NJHOPE to 51684 or call 866-202-HELP (4357) for access to emotional support, education, information and referralsdaily, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. People may also opt in for comforting and nurturing care messages delivered via mobile phone to help them cope with emotional stress on a longer-term, ongoing basis. If any texts or messages are received during off-hours they will be answered the following day.


The lighter touch mobile engagement and consistent supportive messaging afford both quick response and longer-term ongoing support. This approach can help to develop improved mental outlook and resiliency.


“This text line is an important new tool for people to use in seeking emotional support during these times,” New Jersey Human Services Commissioner Carole Johnson said. “As many options as we can provide for this free, confidential help, the better we can help those in need.”


“The emotional needs of New Jersey residents have increased and intensified. Many people find it hard to take that first step to ask for emotional support. The ability to textor call enables each person to choose the communications medium that is most comfortable for him or her. This can make a huge difference for some folks who are hesitant to ask for help,” said Carolyn Beauchamp, President and CEO of the MHANJ.